How To: Screen the Ultimate admin tool — page 2

1 minute read

This is part 2 of the serie How To: Screen the Ultimate admin tool

There is a lot of things you can do now:

  • Going to the next window (Ctrl-a n) or previous window (Ctrl-a p).
  • Getting the number and name of the current window (Ctrl-a N), check at the bottom left.
  • Go to window X (Ctrl-a X) where X is the window number, therefore Ctrl-a 0 to go to the first window you created.
  • Rename a window (Ctrl-a A)
  • Get a listing of all the windows (Ctrl-a “), you can then move up and down using the keyboard arrows and go to a specific window by pressing Enter.


Now, let’s see how it goes using the windows we created. We are going to give them all a name, and switch windows.

First, we are going back to the first window we created when we launched screen. So, let’s go by typing Ctrl-a 0 and as we are running irssi on debian channel, we we call it “irc debian”. In order to do this, we need to use the keybinding Ctrl-a A and then remove the elder name and type “irc debian” instead.

Going back to the windows list Ctrl-a “ will now show window 0 called debian irc and windows 1 and 2 named bash. Go to the last one (#2) and select it Enter. This window is running nload, so let’s call it “nload” [Ctrl-a A].

Now, switch to the previous window [Ctrl-a p], and rename it “top” [Ctrl-a A], back to the windows list [Ctrl-a “], this is now much easier to find the window you started 😉 .


screen allow system administrators and console fans to get more from their terminal as you can easily start windows are find them back by giving them appropriate names.

Another usefull feature of screen is to be able to connect to a remote server, start a screen session, detach the session and then close the ssh connection. Later on, you can connect back to the remote host and attach back the screen session you started earlier on.

People who want to know more about screen my refer to man screen or Ctrl-a ? from within a screen session.

Enjoy it 😉